If you care about privacy, use this default search engine in Chrome, Safari, and Firefox


DuckDuckGo can protect your privacy and data online.

DuckDuck Go

It’s almost that time of year. After the festive holiday dinners and gift exchanges, many are focusing on the new year and their goals for 2022. Although to exercise, organize this mess or even read more maybe on the list of resolutions, what about strengthening your privacy and better protect your data by searching the web? You can still try it regularly deleting your browser history, to unsubscribe password autofills and turn off tracking the location of your browser. But, the easiest way to protect your data may be to switch to an anonymous search engine like DuckDuck Go.

Naomi Antonino / CNET

While it may provide less accurate search results than Google, DuckDuckGo has your privacy in mind and aims to protect your personal information. It encrypts your searches, blocks ad trackers, and doesn’t store your search history data.

Setting DuckDuckGo as the default web search engine is a straightforward process that only takes a minute or two. Here is how to proceed in Google chrome, Safari and Firefox. You can even use DuckDuckGo on your phone.


Once you navigate to your settings all you need to do is select DuckDuckGo as your default search engine in Google Chrome.

Angela Lang / CNET

How to set DuckDuckGo as the default search engine in Google Chrome

  1. Open a new tab in Google Chrome and navigate to DuckDuckGo website.
  2. Right click on the URL in the search bar.
  3. Click on Edit search engines from the drop-down list.
  4. Below Default search engines find DuckDuck Go and click on the three vertical dots.
  5. To select To do Fault.

There is another way to make the private search engine your default engine if you are using Google Chrome and right clicking is a bit tricky.

  1. Open a new tab in Google Chrome.
  2. Click on the three vertical dots in the upper right corner next to the address bar.
  3. To select Settings.
  4. Scroll to Search engine and click on Manage search engines.
  5. Below Default search engines find DuckDuck Go and click on the three vertical dots.
  6. To select Default.

For more privacy, you can also install the DuckDuckGo Chrome browser extension.

Safari browser icon

After finding your search parameters in Safari, you can click on DuckDuckGo.

Screenshot / CNET

How to set DuckDuckGo as the default search engine in Safari

  1. Open Safari, then in the upper left corner of your screen, click Safari in bold.
  2. To select Preferences, then find the To look for section.
  3. Below Search engine, click on the drop-down menu and select DuckDuck Go.

If you are using an iPhone or iPad, you can also use the privacy-focused engine as your default search medium. Here’s how.

  1. Download DuckDuckGo from the App Store.
  2. Access your iPhone or iPad Settings, and scroll to DuckDuck Go.
  3. Faucet Default browser application, and select DuckDuck Go.

You can also add DuckDuckGo as the default browser in Firefox.

Angela Lang / CNET

How to set DuckDuckGo as the default search engine in Firefox

  1. Open Firefox, then click the magnifying glass in the address bar at the top of the browser.
  2. Click on the gear icon at the bottom left of the drop-down menu to access Settings.
  3. To select To look for from the list on the left side of the window.
  4. Scroll to Default search engine.
  5. To select DuckDuck Go from the drop-down menu.

Similar to Chrome, Firefox has an add-on for the search engine which offers additional privacy features.

DuckDuckGo isn’t the only one focused on protecting your personal data. There are the Brave Navigator, which blocks trackers and third-party cookies that monitor your activity when you search the web. It also allows you to control what is blocked and what is not, such as advertisements, cookies or Facebook and Google login buttons. Brave also has DuckDuckGo as the default search engine option.

For more privacy tips, take a look at some browser privacy settings that you must change immediately and 7 things data privacy experts wish you knew on the security of your application. You can also consult CNET’s roundup of browser-based VPNs to try and our list of the best virtual private networks.

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